Catholic bishops in the state of Washington are asking Governor Jay Inslee to veto a new bill that will mandate abortion coverage in all health care plans offered in the state that include maternity care and makes no exception for religious institutions.
According to the Northwest Catholic, the state’s Senate passed Senate Bill 6219 on March 3 by a vote of 27-22. In addition to forcing all employers to offer insurance covering abortion, contraception and sterilization, it will also allow the state to tap Medicaid funds to pay for abortions.
Gov. Inslee is expected to sign the bill into law.
The bill would “place religious employers and others at legal risk simply for following their religious or moral beliefs and exercising the fundamental right of conscience constitutionally guaranteed to all Americans,” the bishops wrote to Gov. Inslee in a March 5 letter.
“By forcibly coercing many of our state’s citizens to act against their consciences, the measure would abrogate this most basic and cherished right which we must defend as bishops, as citizens and people of faith.”
“Even those who do not share our unconditional commitment to the dignity of every person from the moment of conception, have every reason to support our right to exercise our conscience in accord with the teachings of our faith,” they added.
Catholic League president Bill Donohue says the name of the bill, the “Reproductive Parity Act,” speaks volumes.
“Translated, this means that the proponents of the bill believe it is unfair to allow taxpayers to pay for a mother to give birth to her baby while denying funds to a mother who elects to have her baby killed. Live or die—that is their sick idea of parity,” Donohue writes.
He predicts that the bill will certainly be challenged in the courts and although it might not prevail in the lower courts, it will certainly be upheld in higher courts.
“It is a tribute to the nation that Americans are appalled by mass killings in the schools. It does not speak well that so many are not equally appalled by mass killings in the womb, funded, perversely, against the will of millions.”
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